Oh look ANOTHER no-bake granola bar recipe. I swear I cannot make enough variations of this granola bar and I don’t plan to stop trying anytime soon. They are too easy to make, and too perfect for grab-and-go snacks. This version has some dry cake mix throw in along with the peanut butter to create another funfettinutter treat! Personally, I tasted the peanut butter more than the cake mix and will be adding 1/4 cup more the next time I make them. Or maybe I should make them more sinful and mix in cake truffle dough similar to the oatmeal cookie granola bars. But no matter what flavor is more predominant, you cannot deny a granola bar covered in sprinkles!
Lately I can relate a bit too well to PhD comics with several strips related to writing a thesis and/or research papers. Whenever I feel as though there couldn’t possibly be any more edits to be found, somehow my mentor comes up with something drastic to change. Once I even had 3 other people read over it before handing it over to him. Monday he broke it to me that he wanted to put back a large chunk of data which we had removed in early April. Which by the way, I was never too keen on removing in the first place so I am actually glad to have it back, just did not enjoy reformatting all the figures and adding additional discussion about the results. Nevertheless, I sent him another draft to
scribble all over read yesterday. In the meantime, I am finishing up a couple little lab experiments and working on my second paper to be published and my dissertation intro.
And what’s the best thing for all that writing? Snacks! The more I write the less I seem to eat, because eating means to stop writing and therefore to stop whatever thought process I had going which can be difficult at times. Especially when it involves cooking at night for dinner. Tuesday night I found myself so immersed that 9 pm crept up on me before I realized I had not eaten anything since lunch. Such an occasion was saved by these homemade granola bars I had recently made. They are another variation of the no-bake granola bar recipe I have come to love so much using dried apples, chopped walnuts and a little cinnamon. If you want to get really crazy, make them with Peanut Butter & Co’s Cinnamon Raisin Swirl.
One year ago: Jalapeno Popper Stuffed Burgers
Every year come May in Memphis, the 90 degree and up temperatures begin. Except for this year and I’ve been loving every minute of the 70 and 80 degree weather. That was until Monday hit with high 90s and doesn’t seem to want to give up. I saw 103 on my car’s thermometer yesterday, boo! Apparently it’s time to summer through the heat and humidity once again, which means I really dislike turning on my oven. When it’s still over 80 degrees outside at night, turning on the oven just seems wrong with all the hard work my central air is doing.
Time for no-bake granola bars to strike again, this time using almond butter. I love how adaptable this granola bar recipe is, allowing me to try all kinds of flavors and mix-ins. This most recent creation involves almond butter, chopped almonds, dried cherries, and a little bit of dark chocolate. I brought them to my cousin’s bachelorette party weekend and they turned out to be as big of a hit as the coconut pecan cookies. I should have made a double batch!
What’s you favorite mix-ins for granola bars? I’m always looking for new ideas!
In my opinion the best granola bars are the soft chewy ones, and after the no-bake peanut butter granola bars I made I wasn’t sure a granola bar could get any better. But after seeing Lindsay’s recipe for oatmeal cookie dough granola bar in her Cookie Dough Lover’s Cookbook, I decided that the granola bar base from the peanut butter bars were destined to be combined with cookie dough. And not just any cookie dough, but an oatmeal raisin cookie dough with Speculoos cookie butter mixed in. I even went so far as to mix the cookie butter into the granola bar base itself. They may not be the healthiest granola bars, but they taste just like an oatmeal raisin cookie but are better for you than a cookie! Which means they are highly addicting.
Weekday breakfasts are always a challenge, as many of you have heard me complain about before. Everyday I say I am going to put forth more effort than just tipping the top of a cereal box over a bowl, but most of the time it fails and I end up cooing breakfast for dinner instead. But these parfaits may provide that extra motivation to turn the heat on in the morning. This is a relatively quick parfait to make as you can have the crumble baking, the apples simmering, and the quinoa cooking all at the same time. They are also great prepared a head of time (such as the night before), just assemble when ready to eat. An even better thing about this parfait, is that even non-quinoa lovers will enjoy it. The quinoa is flavored with cinnamon and then hidden between layers of syrupy apples, tangy vanilla Greek yogurt, and crunchy oat crumbles. It’s a protein sneak attack!
I need to vent about college football for a minute. First of all, cannot believe we went into overtime against Wisconsin! That game was so low scoring, and the fact they came back at the very end to tie it up shocked me. Thank goodness we won in just one overtime. I don’t think I can handle many more overtime games this year (second one to date). But then both Kansas State (#1) and Oregon (#2) managed to lose their games. I’ve been hoping the Ducks would take the national championship for YEARS now, so that was most upsetting to me. I know a lot can still happen this coming weekend but it’s just a big implosion at the moment. And to think, if Ohio Sate was BCS eligible this year we may have been one of the top 4 right now. Ahh!! But let’s talk about food…
Originally this recipe was called granola bars. I changed it because normally granola bars are not made using an egg, and these bars are softer than even the softest, chewiest granola bar I’ve ever had. Hence oat bars. These would make for a great snack while driving long distance for Thanksgiving, like me. They are nutritious and will get your taste buds in the holiday spirit without ruining your appetite for the feast.
Don’t forget that November is Better Nutrition Month, so keep piling on the orange stuff on Thursday.
I’ve been told my poster presentation went well yesterday. I was dying all day to know how it went, and I am still craving more details but it will have to wait until they return Wednesday night. Ahhhh! But until then…
Chewy granola bars are my absolute favorite. I’ve tried making granola bars in the past, but they never turn out quite as chewy as I would like. Then I cam upon the no-bake granola bar and it changed everything. Especially since this particular recipe includes peanut butter. I even added some mini Reese’s pieces to them instead of mini chocolate chips. Happiness really can come in bar form.
Seems like I post an awful lot of peanut butter recipes. But after consulting my blog tags, this will only be #38 including peanut butter out of 405 published posts. Here I was thinking I should cut back, when in fact I need to shower you with a lot more! Doubt there would be many complaints.
Yes this granola is peanut buttery. It even has some peanuts and dark chocolate chips to go along with your dose of peanut butter. Because any excuse to have peanut butter with chocolate for breakfast, or a snack, is the way I live my life. You could even whip this up quick for your favorite mom in your life! Ya know, just in case you almost forgot that Mother’s Day is this Sunday…
I won’t be seeing the mothers in my life this weekend, but next weekend I get to see three in Boston! (To answer your confused faces: my sister-in-law Kate who is obviously the newest mother in my life albeit not my mother, my step-mother who will be driving up as well with my dad, and my mom herself who is also driving up with my step-dad. “When Mothers Attack”?) And I will be cooking for all of them to make up for the week delay of love-showering.
Remember a few weeks ago when I mentioned the care package I sent to my brother and sister-in-law just in time before their first child was born? And that the contents went with them to the hospital? Ok you probably don’t remember but here are the granola bars which satisfied their bellies while waiting for Luke to enter into the world.
Knowing that Kate is a chocolate freak, I decided to use the Dark Chocolate Dreams peanut butter from Peanut Butter & Co. in the making of these bars. And it was the correct choice. When it is never not a good idea to combine chocolate and peanut butter anyway? I even crumbled one of them up in some vanilla Greek yogurt. Oh yea.
Speaking of Luke, I get to meet him in 23 days!! He has been going through a big cuddler phase lately and I hope it hangs around. Kate says he seems to be getting even more cuddly as time goes on, so he might be Velcro by the time I am there. Totally okay with that, until I have to leave and be cuddle-deprived. Did I mention that he is already a sharp dresser as well? Just look at that fabulous bowtie!
One year ago: Bacon-Corn Fritters
DARK CHOCOLATE PEANUT BUTTER GRANOLA BARS
Makes 16 bars
2 cups dry rolled oats
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 cup wheat germ
1/4 cup ground flaxseed
1/3 cup chopped almonds
1/2 cup chopped peanuts
1/3 cup chocolate chips
1/2 cup Peanut Butter & Co.’s Dark Chocolate Dreams peanut butter
1/4 cup honey, plus more if needed
- Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Grease an 8×8-inch baking dish with non-stick spray, set aside.
- Combine oats, flax, wheat germ, salt, nuts and chocolate chips in a bowl and mix. Add peanut butter and mix with 2 spoons, coating as much as you can. Eventually you may need to mix with your hands – I did this to create more of a dough.
- Add honey slowly and coat thoroughly. If the granola won’t stick together, add more honey 1 teaspoon at a time and really mix with your hands.
- Press dough into prepared baking dish. Bake for 25 minutes. Allow to cool completely before cutting into squares (2×2-inch), or bars (1×4-inch).
Source: Adapted slightly from How Sweet It Is.